Adobe has confirmed that a massive hack that led to the theft of private customer
information is much worse than originally believed. The software maker now says the scope of the breach
opened up more than 38 million customer accounts to cyber criminals. Source code for Adobe Photoshop, ColdFusion, Acrobat and Reader was also compromised.
On Oct. 3, Adobe had said 2.9 million customer data files were hacked, including names, encrypted credit or debit card numbers, expiration dates, and other information relating to orders.
Adobe spokeswoman Heather Edell told Reuters on Tuesday that the company believes attackers got their hands on "many invalid Adobe IDs, inactive Adobe IDs, Adobe IDs with invalid encrypted passwords and test account data."
"Our investigation is still ongoing," she said. "We anticipate the full investigation will take some time to complete."
Lock Down ColdFusion Platforms
We asked Tommy Chin, technical support engineer at Core Security, for this take on the latest news from Adobe. He told us the attackers were clearly quite experienced to hide their activities from Adobe.
"Source code for Acrobat, Photoshop, and Reader is a diamond mine for zero-day exploit writers. I suspect there will be spike in the number of zero-day attacks targeting the PDF format in the near future. ColdFusion is a rare platform to see these days, but it does have a customer base," Chin said.
His advice: keep ColdFusion platforms locked down to internal interfaces only. Connecting them to external interfaces will only get you caught by a future zero-day attack . As we speak, he said, Adobe's code is being analyzed and zero-days will be developed.
"We can only hope Adobe will have the resources to respond to the attacks in the wild," Chin said. "I suggest those affected by the stolen credit card information change their credit card numbers as soon as possible. Assume the stolen information will be fully decrypted."
Expect More Malware
Ken Pickering, director of engineering at Core Security, told us Adobe has an abysmal record when it comes to the security of its end users. While the most public criticism of its security policy came from Steve Jobs, Pickering said he has been to more than several industry talks on how to abuse Adobe client applications -- and it's no small reason one of the most popular vectors of a client-side attack is a PDF document.
"It's gotten to the point where I don't use any PDF Reader by Adobe if I can possibly avoid it, and block Flash from any remotely sensitive machine. So, it doesn't really surprise me their company suffered a pretty significant breach of not only their source code, but also their user's PII/PCI information," he said.
"In terms of the effects of this, if you're still using Adobe software, expect more malware to be released for it, since fuzzing is a lot easier when you've got the source. And, if you're one of the unlucky users who got their information stolen, now is a great time to change to a password manager so you can easily use unique passwords across the board, and keep an eye on your credit card statement."